1777       

29th. January Wednesday
John Phillip Kemble, the actor, made his first appearance at the Theatre Royal, January 29th.(7)

4th. March Tuesday
John Bradshaw, for many years an active magistrate in the town, died March 4.(7)

31st. August Sunday
Lady Lever, widow of Sir Darcy Lever, and mother of Sir Ashton Lever, died at Culshaw, in her 74th year, August 31.(7)

14th. September Sunday
The shock of an earthquake was felt at Manchester, Middleton, Macclesfield, Preston, Wigan, Ashton, Stockport, and other places. The bells of the old church and of St. Mary’s were set ringing by the force of the shock. Sept. 14. Bishop Porteous wrote A Letter to the Inhabitants of Manchester, Macclesfield, and adjacent parts on occasion of the late Earthquake, Chester, 1777. Another pamphlet appeared, entitled Observations and Reflections on the late Earthquake. By a gentleman of this town. Manchester, 1777. (Axon’s Cheshire Gleanings.)(7)

September
A three days’ musical festival, held in September, is believed to be the earliest of its kind in England.(7)

1777
Green dye, for cotton, was invented by Mr. B. Williams.(7)

1777
A grand stand was erected on Kersal Moor.(7)

1777
A cupola on the tower of St. Ann’s Church was taken down and replaced by a spire. It was soon after removed.(7)

1777
Considerable street improvements were effected. Exchange Street was formed, by pulling down a pile of old buildings, called the “Dark Entry,” forming a narrow footway which led from Market Place to St. Ann’s Square. The streets, which were improved by the acts of 1776 and 1777, had long been felt to be a disgrace to the town.(7)

1777
The Manchester people distinguished themselves by their loyal zeal in a foolish and unavailing attempt to coerce the American colonies. There was a subscription which amounted to £8,075, for the purpose of raising the cele­brated “Seventy-Second Regiment,” to serve in America during the war. They were sent to Gibraltar instead, where they fought with great bravery during the siege of that place. The regiment consisted of 1,082 men. The people of Manchester were much elated at this display of military ardour. In an ode, written on this occasion by the Rev. John Whitaker, they are thus eulogised :-

But Britain in this race of fame,
Which of thy daughter-towns may claim,
The greatest share of glory for the whole?
‘Tis Manchester that claims the share,
‘Tis Manchester re-urged the war,
‘Tie Manchester re-awaked the British soul.

On the return of the regiment in 1783 they were received with enthusiasm, and their colours were deposited with much ceremony in the Collegiate Church, from whence they were removed to Chetham College.(7)

1777
The Manchester Free Grammar School, Long Millgate, was rebuilt.(7)

1777
Samuel Clowes, of Broughton, was appointed high sheriff.(7)